Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Fourth Degree
In New York, the possession of firearms and weapons is highly regulated. Knowingly carrying some types of weapons may constitute a crime, even if you did not intend to break the law. Criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree is a misdemeanor offense that may nevertheless result in serious penalties if you are convicted. At Tilem & Associates, our Westchester County gun crime attorneys can provide dedicated legal representation to people facing charges for weapons offenses. We have the resources and knowledge to defend you if you have been accused of criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree.Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Fourth Degree
The New York Penal Code contains several laws concerning the right to possess guns, weapons, and instruments that may be used as weapons. Criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree is one of the less serious weapons possession offenses, classified as a Class A misdemeanor. The penalties for a conviction may include a jail sentence of up to one year, probation, and/or a fine. In many cases, however, criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree is charged in conjunction with another offense, such as assault or a gun crime. Fighting the charges with the assistance of a criminal defense attorney may help you to avoid unnecessary penalties.
Criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree covers a few different circumstances. First, the statute provides an outright ban on carrying certain items in the state of New York. Specifically, the possession of any firearm, electronic dart gun, electronic stun gun, switchblade knife, metal knuckle knife, pilum ballistic knife, bludgeon, billy, cane sword, blackjack, metal knuckles, plastic knuckles, chuka stick, sandclub, sand bag, wrist-brace type slingshot, shirken, or Kung Fu star is prohibited under the statute. It is also illegal to knowingly possess a bullet that contains an explosive substance designed to detonate upon impact. Recent court decisions, however, have found that the complete ban on possession of stun guns, dart guns, and chuka sticks violates the second amendment to the U.S. Constitution. These rulings will likely have an affect on how the law is applied, notwithstanding the language of the statute.
Criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree may also apply to the possession of knives and other objects if carried with an unlawful intent. The statute expressly prohibits possession of any dangerous knife, dagger, dirk, stiletto, machete, razor, imitation pistol, undetectable knife, or any other dangerous weapon or instrument with the intent to use it unlawfully against another person. In addition, armor piercing ammunition possessed with the intent to use it unlawfully against another may be grounds for a fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon charge.
Certain people may be arrested for criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree if they have firearms and weapons. In New York, it is a crime for a person who is not a citizen of the United States to possess any dangerous or deadly weapon. Likewise, it is illegal for someone previously convicted of a felony or serious criminal offense to possess a shotgun, rifle, antique firearm, black powder shotgun, black powder rifle, or other muzzle-loading firearm. The final section of the statute provides that criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree is committed when a person who has been certified not suitable to possess a rifle or shotgun refuses to give up possession upon the command of a police officer.Consult a Westchester County Attorney Regarding Weapons Possession Charges
If you have been arrested for criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree in Westchester County, a criminal defense lawyer can help you assert your legal rights. At Tilem & Associates, our hardworking legal team works tirelessly to assist defendants in Queens and Bronx, as well as Kings, Suffolk, Nassau, Richmond, Rockland, and Putnam Counties. Arrange a free consultation to discuss a gun charge or other criminal matter by calling 877-377-8666 or contacting us online.